Between 50 and 100 million
years ago, during the geological periods known as Cretaceous
and Tertiary, the Atlantic Ocean covered much of Georgia
south of an imaginary line drawn from Columbus to Augusta, which
is where the Piedmont Plateau meets the coastal plain.
Above this line, known
as the Fall Line, weathered crystalline rocks at the Piedmont
Plateau began to break down and rushing streams carried the tiny
feldspar and kaolinite crystals seaward to form large sedimentary
deposits. During later periods, earth was piled on top of the
kaolin; this overlying layer of earth contained sharks teeth,
sand dollars and other marine life fossils and contributed to
the alteration of the feldspar and kaolinite deposits. Sedimentary
kaolin deposits were formed in middle Georgia as a result of the
weathering and erosion of the Piedmont rock, enriching the lives
of Georgians who reside along the Fall Line.